For an authentic taste of Italian foods and cooking in Philadelphia, there is perhaps no better place to go than to South Philly's Italian Market. This weekend, the Italian Market is host to the Italian Market Festival. Your entire family will enjoy the annual Procession of Saints, three stages of live music and entertainment, the John Marzano Half Ball Tournament, vendors selling unique wares, and so much food to fill their satisfied bellies.
All of your senses will be alive as you wander 9th Street and encounter the sights, sounds, and aromas of the nation's oldest outdoor market. Along with street vendors for the festival, visit the shops that are as varied and international as Philadelphia itself. Butcher, cheese, and other food shops will delight your tongue with fresh sausage and peppers, roast pork sandwiches, antipasto salads, cheeses, cured meats, pastries galore, and so much more. Explore Asian and Mexican delicacies that go beyond the anticipated Italian experience.
Saturday and Sunday are full of entertainment found on three stages with music that is sure to keep your toe tapping while you peruse the food vendors. The Procession of Saints, an annual event that is part of the parish's May celebration, begins Sunday at noon at Saint Mary Magdalen Church and ends at St. Paul Catholic Church. The procession pauses at the Italian Market at 9th Street and Washington for the Blessing of the Market before traveling on.
Be sure to catch a game of half ball on both days of the festival as part of the John Marzano Half Ball Tournament. Half ball is a Philadelphia game that takes baseball and puts it in narrow streets and amongst row homes without breaking windows and causing general mayhem. The rules are a little different but definitively Philadelphian.
Check the festival website for parking suggestions and arrive with plenty of room in your stomach (and pantry) for a weekend that will be a part of your calendar for years to come.
|Vendor costs vary.|
Philadelphia’s 9th Street Italian Market